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Lines light up as MnSure call center opens for questions

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Operators are standing by...to explain the options that will be available through Minnesota's new health insurance exchange.

Known as MNsure, the exchange itself launches on Oct. 1.The Star Tribune reports that more than two dozen operators at the exchange's St Paul call center began answering phones Tuesday in anticipation of the change.

The Pioneer Press reports that in its first five hours of operation, the operators fielded more than 200 calls. The typical call lasted about 4 minutes. Questions were about benefits and eligibility were the most frequently asked.

More than a million Minnesotans are expected to obtain coverage through the health exchange. Every state will offer an exchange as a new marketplace where individuals and small businesses will be able to buy coverage as of Oct. 1.

Call center operators can offer assistance in English, Spanish, Hmong and Somali. Operators can connect callers who needing assistance in 140 other languages. The call center's hours are 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday. The MNsure call center's toll-free number is 855-366-7873.

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